Sep. 17, 2019

Temporary judge program


Through the Temporary Judge Program, the Court maintains a panel of trained, qualified, and experienced attorneys who may serve as temporary judges in the area of Small Claims.  Approximately 400 new small claims cases are filed with the court each year. Temporary judges serving in the Small Claims division preside over trials, hearing only such law and motion matters as may pertain to the trial before them. This was developed in collaboration with the local bar to expedite cases in a timely manner.

Recruitment

At this time, recruitment for the Temporary Judge Program is closed.

Requirements

Experience Required for Appointment and Service

An attorney that has been admitted to practice as a member of the State Bar of California for 10 years may be appointed to serve as a temporary judge (however, for good cause, the presiding judge may permit an attorney who has been admitted to practice for at least 5 years to serve as a temporary judge).

Minimum Qualifications

The Presiding Judge may appoint an attorney to serve as a temporary judge only if the following minimum qualifications are satisfied. The attorney:

  • must be a member in good standing of the State Bar and has no disciplinary action pending;
  • has not pled guilty or no contest to a felony, or has not been convicted of a felony that has not been reversed;
  • has satisfied the education and training requirements;
  • has satisfied all other general conditions that the Court may establish for appointment of an attorney as a temporary judge in that court; and has satisfied any additional conditions that the Court may require for an attorney to be appointed as a temporary judge for a particular assignment or type of case in that court
  • Mandatory Training Requirements

    The Presiding Judge may appoint an attorney to serve as a temporary judge only if the following minimum training requirements are satisfied before appointment:

    1. Training on Bench Conduct and Demeanor

    Attended and successfully completed, within the previous 3 years, a course of at least 3 hours duration on the subjects identified in rule. 2.813(a) approved by the Court in which the attorney will serve. This course must be taken in-person.

    2. Training in Ethics

    Attended and successfully completed, within the previous 3 years, a course of at least 3 hours duration on the subjects identified in rule 2.813(b) approved by the Court in which the attorney will serve. This course may be taken by any means approved by the Court, including in-person, by broadcast with participation, or online.

    3. Substantive Training (Small Claims)
    Attended and successfully completed, within the previous;3 years, a course on the substantive law in Small Claims 2.813(c) which the attorney will serve as a temporary judge. This course may be taken by any means approved by the Court, including in person, by broadcast with participation, or online. 

    For listing and scheduling of classes, please click on the Online Course Schedule link under Resources

    Contact Information

    Questions and comments should be directed via email to the Temporary Judge Program Administrator at info@napacourt.com

    Resources

    Online Course Schedule and Resources for Temporary Judges

    The following Rules of Court apply to Temporary Judges:

    Rules of Professional Conduct  Rule 1-710

    The following sections of the Canons of Judicial Ethics relating to fairness are applicable to Temporary Judges: Canons 2A, 2C, 3B(5), 3B(6), 3B(8), 3C(1), 3C(2), 3C(4), 3E, 5B, and 6D(3)(a).

    © 2019 Napa County Superior Court